Gaiters can be extremely useful on scrambles and in wet, muddy, and snowy conditions. During highly windy days, they provide extra warmth. Make sure you always carry gaiters in my daypack if the weather turns unpredictable. Runners also find them helpful, especially for snowshoeing.
Our guide to the best hiking gaiters will help you choose the right ones for your favorite outdoor activity, from mountaineering to trail running.
- What are gaiters?
- How effective are gaiters?
- Gaiters: Are they worth it?
- Best Waterproof Gaiters for Hiking
- Outdoor Research Women’s Verglas Gaiters
- Salomon Trail Gaiters
- Black Diamond Apex Gaiters
- Hillsound Armadillo LT I Waterproof
- Outdoor Research Rocky Mountain Low Gaiters
- RAB Muztag GTX Waterproof Gore-tex Gaiter
- Outdoor Research Men’s Crocodile Gaiters
- Buying Guide for Gaiters
- How effective are gaiters at protecting you from snake bites?
- Frequently Asked Questions
- Can gaiters be washed in the washing machine?
- Final Thoughts
What are gaiters?
During winter hiking, gaiters are worn over your boots and pants to protect your legs and feet. The gaiters have a strap that fits under the boot and adhesive to keep them on while hiking.
Gaiters are made of water-resistant and waterproof materials to keep you dry. The most commonly used material is nylon coated with a weather-resistant coating.
Please note that water-resistant gaiters will only repel small amounts of water, whereas waterproof gaiters will repel large amounts. The best time to wear water-resistant gaiters is when the trail is relatively dry.
It is recommended to wear waterproof gaiters on snowy and wet trails. Generally, waterproof gaiters tend to be more expensive and made from more durable materials.
How effective are gaiters?
Hiking gaiters keep your feet dry and comfortable while hiking. When hiking in deep snow, make sure you wear gaiters.
Gaiters: Are they worth it?
Regardless of the weather, hiking gaiters protect your boots. Your outdoor experience will be much more comfortable if you keep sharp branches, stones, and mud out of your shoes. Hikers and trail runners should ensure that there is no gunk seeping into their shoes that could ruin the whole experience or even cause serious injury.
In addition to protecting your legs from sharp branches, insects, protruding rocks, and snake bites, long gaiters also protect you against snake bites. If you enjoy hiking in the winter, get your hands on waterproof hiking gaiters.
Best Waterproof Gaiters for Hiking
Outdoor Research Women’s Verglas Gaiters
Outdoor Research Women’s Verglas Gaiters are made up of high-quality fiber. Make sure that you treat them with care. It’s washable in the machine. These are imported gaiters that are very lightweight and easily packable.
Most surprisingly, they are built with a high-quality, durable pretext shield that is also waterproof. Remember that these gaiters come up with visible fabric while retaining the performance.
These are available in one adjustable size, making them the most versatile gaiters, and are simply the only option for women’s gaiters. Most surprisingly, these gaiters are the perfect fit with excellent protection.
They do the job well and hold up easily. They’re long-lasting and stay in good shape for almost five years. It does not matter whether you use it frequently or for less time; it is stable, durable, and reliable.
- Beautiful fabric lining
- Comes with a buckle closure
- High-quality and long-lasting fabric
- Hold up well
- Ankle height does not provide the best protection
Salomon Trail Gaiters
Salomon Trail gaiters are mid-size gaiters perfect for your hiking trip. Don’t miss its attractive black and red color design. They’re made up of high-quality 78% nylon and 22% elastane.
These gadgets are mostly machine washable, but you must properly care for them. It is highly recommended not to dry clean them and not to bleach or iron them.
They have imported gaiters, and the country of origin is Vietnam. Most surprisingly, they are straightforward to use; you just have to simply slide these gaiters over your shoes and velcro them closed.
You might encounter dust, dirt, gravel, and snow during hiking. You have to move through thorny and grassy areas. But do not worry about it because you have fully functional gaiters.
They will protect you from dust and debris reaching your feet. They also prevent the ankle bone from shocks, and the good thing is that they are perfectly fit on your boots.
- Made up of high-quality material
- Elastic fabric
- Perfect ankle bone protection from shocks.
- Easy to use and durable
- You must hand wash it
- It can’t be washed in the machine.
- Ease of Use: when the trail becomes more of a rubble pile, simply slide these gaiters over your shoes and Velcro them closed.
Black Diamond Apex Gaiters
Black Diamond Apex Gaiters are made of synthetic fabric and washable in washing machines. The upper shell of these gaiters is hard and has three layers. It has a welded double layer.
They perfectly fit on the shoes and calves due to the loop and hook front closure. The upper closure is also through the buckle, which is easily fit. An inner adjustment buckle is also present, made up of nickel, so you can easily walk on rough terrains with the help of these gaiters.
Calf-high gaiters protect you from dust, debris, and snake bites. It also has webbed closure at the top with a side release buckle. Most surprisingly, these are nickel-coated buckles for adjustment over the instep. People also like its adjustable heel strap, which keeps the gaiters in place. It also helps in tightening the gaiters very quickly.
- Made up of high-quality fabric
- Give your feet and legs complete protection
- Adjustable straps
- Highly durable and long-lasting
- Nylon is less breathable.
- Built using the highest quality components
- Stay safe with our trekking and skiing gear
- Wide variety of products to aid in your outdoor adventures
Hillsound Armadillo LT I Waterproof
Hillsound Armadillo is fully waterproof gaiters, stain resistant, and has an excellent finish. The presence of zippers gives them complete protection from elements such as dust, dirt, and even snake bites.
We can also call them ideal and versatile. No one can beat them in terms of versatility and longevity. Even if you frequently use them, they can last for years. They are perfect for use in all seasons.
So you can use these gaiters during the winter, spring, summer, and even fall. They are highly durable and made up of 3 layers. Remember that these layers are stretchable, waterproof, and high-quality fabric. This fabric is essential in reducing condensation and keeps your legs always dry. These are so durable that they remain the same even after 50 washes.
- Waterproof and imported gaiters
- Machine washable
- Work in all seasons
- Lightweight and long-lasting gaiters
- The trouble with straps slipping on buckles
- WATERPROOF [Up to 20,000 mm]: Waterproof and stain-resistant finish coupled with a waterproof YKK zipper to provide full protection from the elements. Versatile and Ideal gaiter choice for all year. Ideal for all seasons; Fall, Winter, Spring, and Summer.
- HIGH DURABILITY: Top cuff features Flexia; a 3-layer stretchy, waterproof, and ripstop fabric that reduces condensation and keeps your legs dry; DWR finish is durable for up to 50 washes.
- PREMIUM PROTECTION: The bottom portion of the gaiter is made from abrasion-resistant 1000D nylon that protects against snow, rain, mud, rocks, sticks, burrs, snakes, and leeches.
- FORM FITTING: The ripstop fabric is contour-fitting which reduces loose fabric from getting snagged through day-hiking, backpacking, hunting, cross-country skiing, or snowshoeing in the front or backcountry.
- SECURE: Adjustable and removable buckle instep secures the gaiter in place and provides premiere protection from elements entering the gaiter. Durable, hard-wearing gaiters constructed to last; covered by a limited lifetime warranty.
Outdoor Research Rocky Mountain Low Gaiters
If you are searching for 100% nylon gaiters, you are at the right place. They’re made of high-quality nylon, so if you want to hike during winter to protect your legs from the cold, these are the perfect ones.
Make sure you use them carefully, but they are durable ones that can last for years. The good thing about these gaiters is that they are machine washable and excellent for hiking and trekking.
These are no bulk low-top design gaiters you can use for all seasons. So we conclude that these gadgets stand out in the market due to their high performance. Even if they are made of high-quality nylon, they are lightweight to carry around.
- Fit for larger calves
- Good quality and design
- Perfect protection from dirt and dust
- It also works well in the rainy season
- Not ideal for most extreme conditions
- Outdoor Research Rocky Mountain Low Gaiters
RAB Muztag GTX Waterproof Gore-tex Gaiter
Why not try out these great gaiters if you are hiking and mountaineering? They are available in two colors, black and red, from which you can choose according to your liking.
These high-quality technical gaiters keep you dry and protected all the time. Also, they are highly breathable and waterproof to withstand extreme conditions. They are very lightweight, so after wearing these gaiters, you will not feel any kind of heaviness.
They are extra tops to protect you from harsh environments and dust and dirt as they are made of high-quality 300 D nylon. If you go on mountaineering, you can also use these gaiters as they are compatible with mountaineering boots.
- Waterproof with easy closure
- Made up of high-quality materials
- Machine washable
- High-quality buckle closure
- Not water resistant
- For Summit Bids or Snowy Switchbacks | Rab’s most technical gaiter, made to keep you dry and protected on technical ascents.
- GORE-TEX PRO Most Breathable | GORE-TEX’s waterproofing for extreme conditions, with high breathability and lighter weight.
- Reinforced Ankle | Extra tough 300D nylon around the lower half of the gaiter guards against sharp crampons.
- Easy Closure | Rab opted for hook-and-loop closure instead of zippers for easy on and off—even with gloves.
- Compatible With Mountaineering Boots | Designed to fit over technical mountaineering boots.
Outdoor Research Men’s Crocodile Gaiters
If style matters to you, then you will be a die heart fan of these gaiters. Most surprisingly, they are available in beautiful designs and colors from which you can choose according to your liking.
Like the above, they are also made up of high-quality 100% nylon from the upper side. From the inner side, they are made up of 100 D Cordura. They are high-quality imported gaiters with buckle closure and machine washable; they are breathable, waterproof, and abrasion resistant.
On the other side, they are also windproof with laminated construction. So if you want to use these boots in the winter season, they are perfect. Due to their outstanding construction, they also prevent your legs from intense cold and intense sunlight.
You will definitely like their buckle top closure and reinforced boot lace hooks. The double-stitched front closure will give these gaiters more durability and longevity.
- Available in different beautiful colors
- High-quality buckle
- Made up of beautiful nylon material
- Perfect protection from snakes and other animals
- Not satisfied with the sizing, it all depends on you to choose the perfect size.
- OUTDOOR RESEARCH: We built a company from a feeling: the urge to get out. It's what drives us. Our tribe is devoted to exploring our outdoor passions and challenging ourselves in the mountains, water, and deserts of the planet we love so much.
Buying Guide for Gaiters
While gaiters are pretty simple, several different types exist, each serving a specific purpose. You might consider adding the following types of gaiters to your gear list:
A canvas gaiter is a bit more expensive than its nylon cousin but tends to breathe better.
Canvas gaiters tend to be more comfortable in a broader range of temperatures due to their excellent breathability. When hiking in the summer, it may be best to invest in a gaiter that is a bit more breathable.
The name of the gaiter implies that it is short. Usually, ankle gaiters are made from lightweight, breathable fabric that reaches just above the ankle. When trail running or doing similar activities, short gaiters will keep sand and twigs out of your shoes, but they won’t keep much else out. They are best suited for fast and light activities since their lower leg protection isn’t as good as other gaiters.
Nylon gaiters are known for their nylon composition. Their main benefit is keeping your feet dry when it rains or snows and keeping sticks and twigs from entering your shoes.
Nylon gaiters are unable to breathe, which is a significant problem. For nylon gaiters to be comfortable, it typically has to be reasonably cold outside for you not to sweat profusely. Some people don’t mind this, but others are driven insane by it.
Despite its superficial appearance, the design of a gaiter plays a significant role in its usefulness. The method of most gaiters is similar, but there are a few things that can be tweaked. Small debris can be kept out of your shoes depending on how well a gaiter fits over them.
Depending on how your gaiters are designed, you might have difficulty putting them on quickly. The size of your gaiters can also be determined by how easily and effectively they can be adjusted.
Size and Length
Before buying gaiters, you should also consider their size and length.
Gaiters typically come in two lengths:
Usually, these go up to your knees to further protect your leg.
Using these gaiters, you will protect your ankles.
How effective are gaiters at protecting you from snake bites?
Snakes are one of the primary reasons Australians wear gaiters. The gaiters are believed to prevent snakes from reaching a person’s skin, thereby protecting them from venom.
However, gaiters may offer protection, especially if you encounter a small snake that cannot penetrate gaiters and trousers. Insufficient protection can be provided by gaiters alone. Keeping a significant distance from snakes and being constantly aware of your surroundings is more important than wearing lower leg protection.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can gaiters be worn over waterproof trousers?
Gaiters seem to be a contentious issue when putting them underneath or over waterproof trousers. They should go underneath waterproofs, but over your non-waterproof walking trousers beneath the waterproofs.
Can gaiters be washed in the washing machine?
The gaiters can be washed in a washing machine with most pairs. To remove dirt and debris, use a sponge or small soft brush and warm water with mild detergent to hand wash them. Be sure to clean straps, buckles, and poppers of any mud.
Do you need to wash Gore-Tex frequently?
As with washing down jackets, there is always a difference of opinion when washing GORE-TEX waterproof jackets. To maintain the best performance of your GORE-TEX coat or pants, it is imperative to care for them routinely. After the heavy activity, we recommend care every 10-12 days.
A great pair of waterproof gaiters can be used for various outdoor adventures. For difficult ice climbing, try our top choice, the Black Diamond Apex Gaiters, or for keeping rocks out of your shoes while running, try something light like Outdoor Research Men’s Crocodile Gaiters.
Equipment selection is just as important as any other decision. After reading our guide to the best waterproof hiking gaiters, you should be able to narrow down your options and find the perfect waterproof hiking gaiter.